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      Johnsonville turns 100 years old

      The Johnsonville Heritage Festival is set for May 17 and 18 near Lynches River at Venters Landing, off Kingsburg Highway.

      The Island Country Band from Charleston will perform around 7 p.m. Friday.

      There will also be a free dinner.

      The city will unveil its General Francis Marion statue at the landing at 1 p.m. Saturday.

      The seven-foot-tall statue of the Revolutionary War hero is ten feet wide and features General Marion's torso and the head of his Marsh Tacky horse.

      It stands on a 12-foot base at the very site in Johnsonville where the General received his commission to lead the Williamsburg militia from the Johnsonville community.

      Johnsonville Mayor Steve Dukes hopes the statue will boost tourism in his town.

      "We really think it's our first step of development in the tourism industry. This is a historical site. No other place in South Carolina that can say this is the place where Francis Marion met to take over the Williamsburg militia. That's what makes this such an historical site," said Mayor Dukes.

      The city will also honor its oldest veteran who will celebrate his 100th birthday in May.

      There will be all sorts of food, games and entertainment.

      Florence County's Warren Stone will make a special guest appearance. Stone was a contestant on NBC's "The Voice" singing competition.

      If you would like more information about the event, youcan contact Ron Douglas or Kem Poston at (843) 386-3500.